A total of 60 Malaysians were awarded the MOE Taiwan Scholarship and Huayu Enrichment Scholarship (HES) this year to pursue academic degrees or short-term Mandarin courses in Taiwan. Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in Malaysia held the scholarship award ceremony and pre-departure orientation for the recipients at Holiday Inn Express KLCC Centre on July 7, 2023.
Among the 37 recipients of the MOE Taiwan Scholarship, 8 will be pursuing a bachelor's degree, 24 will be studying for a master's degree program, and 5 are going to start a doctoral program at Taiwan universities. The 23 awardees will learn Mandarin at university-affiliated language centers through HES. The number of recipients of the Taiwan Scholarship has increased from 20 in 2019 to 37, and the number of recipients of HES has also risen from 12 in 2019 to 23 this year.
Around 50 scholarship recipients attended the ceremony and received their award certificates from Phoebe Yeh, Representative of TECO in Malaysia. In her opening remarks, Representative Yeh expressed congratulations to the scholarship awardees. “Since 2004, the Ministry of Education of the Republic of China (Taiwan) has been offering the Taiwan Scholarship and Huayu Enrichment Scholarship to encourage outstanding Malaysian students to pursue degrees or learn Mandarin in Taiwan. Hundreds of scholarship recipients have graduated from Taiwan’s universities or Mandarin centers and achieved success in a variety of professions for the past 19 years. Malaysian students have always performed well. Thus, we hope that the awardees would use this opportunity to extend their worldviews and increase their knowledge while studying in Taiwan. The skills and expertise obtained will enable them to excel in various fields and may serve as a bridge for enhancing the bilateral relationship between Taiwan and Malaysia as top talent."
She pointed out that Taiwan’s competitiveness has rapidly increased over the years. Taiwan has moved up to sixth place among 64 economies in the 2023 world competitiveness rankings released recently by the International Institute for Management Development (IMD). Taiwan has become one of Asia’s most competitive economies, second only to Singapore. Taiwan’s overall ranking has improved for the fifth consecutive year.
Representative Yeh also added that Taiwan's higher education is world-renowned for its R&D competitiveness, industry–academia collaboration, and pioneering development in semiconductors, information technology as well as cultural and creative design industries. Its focus on scientific research and practical application of knowledge has received high recognition from students worldwide. Following the growing worldwide trend in Mandarin (huayu) learning, Taiwan is an ideal place to study Mandarin through immersion in the daily Mandarin life culture. Furthermore, with the increasing number of English-taught courses introduced in the universities and colleges in Taiwan and the government’s effort to establish a Muslim-friendly environment, many international students are interested in exploring their interests by undertaking full-time degree courses or learning Mandarin in Taiwan.
Ms. Charlin Chang, Director of the Education Division, TECO Malaysia stated that aside from these two scholarships, a Malaysian student is awarded the Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund (ICDF) Scholarship Program to undertake a Master's degree in Taiwan. Another outstanding student is also granted a generous scholarship to study bachelor's degree under a program that is co-organized by the National Cheng Kung University and the Education Division of TECO in Malaysia this year. She wished all the recipients an amazing and memorable journey in Taiwan.
More than a hundred scholarship recipients and their families attended the event to share honor and joy. A briefing session on applications for visas and Alien residence certificates was given to the recipients. Four awardees of past MOE Taiwan Scholarship and Huayu Enrichment Scholarship were invited to share their study journey and advice in Taiwan with the participants. The event was also widely reported by the local media.